Official says no plans for now to form three-way nuke deterrence consultative body with U.S., Japan

May 1, 2023

A senior official at South Korea’s foreign ministry said Monday that Seoul has no plans for now to create a trilateral consultative group on extended deterrence with Washington and Tokyo.

The official made the remarks amid media speculation that South Korea, the United States and Japan may establish a three-way nuclear consultative body, after President Yoon Suk Yeol and U.S. President Joe Biden agreed to create a bilateral Nuclear Consultative Group (NCG) to strengthen extended deterrence against North Korea’s threats.

“No concrete discussions were held yet on (establishing) a multilateral consultative body involving other countries like Japan,” the official said.

The official cautioned against reading too much into the media speculation, saying, “There are no plans or schedules at the moment” for the three nations to form a trilateral consultative group on extended deterrence.

Yoon is widely expected to hold a three-way summit with Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on the sidelines of a Group of Seven (G7) summit meeting in Japan later this month.

“We will first focus on creating the bilateral consultative group between South Korea and the U.S. and strengthening bilateral consultations,” the official added.